For the first time in more than a month, the Indiana Pacers can go into a game confidently knowing that their usual starters won’t play poorly.
They won’t play well, either, since they won’t even be on the court. But given how the team has played recently, that could be an improvement.
All five starters will sit out Wednesday’s game against the Milwaukee Bucks, coach Frank Vogel told reporters. Vogel insisted that it was not a punishment after the Pacers’ dismal 8-10 March, which led to them falling out of first place in the Eastern Conference.
Rather, he said, it is a matter of rest.
“The starters are not going to play (Wednesday), all five of them,” Vogel said, according to USA Today. “We’re going to rest them and try to heal up some various bumps and bruises involved with all five guys.
“We’re not playing well as a basketball team right now. Our starters aren’t playing well, our bench is not playing well. We want to try to get the starters on track by getting their legs back under them healed up. We want to get the bench back on track by giving them extended minutes in (Wednesday’s) game. That’s the plan.”
The Pacers (53-25) sit a game behind the Miami Heat in the loss column in the race for the East’s top seed. The Pacers, who have not won consecutive games since March 17, have one last pivotal regular-season matchup with Miami on Friday.